Meyssell Case Scenario Overview

Ethical Dilemma

Although the representatives of healthcare services are obliged to strive for the benefit of the patient and provide adequate treatment (Corrigan & Gorski, 2012), the patient or their guardians may be free to refuse treatment because of their personal beliefs according to the U.S. regulations (Demakis, 2011), even though other members of the family may disagree. Therefore, despite the duty to take proper care of the patient, healthcare service employees may be unable to make any decisions related to the patient’s health. The case in point is a graphic example of the specified dilemma; although it is crucial to provide adequate treatment of meningitis to the child, the mother as her guardian has the right to refuse from the services suggested by the hospital. The fact that the father is against the specified step may be used as the argument in favor of treatment; however, the mother being the guardian of the child, there are very few chances that her decision may be change unless the representatives of the healthcare services in question create the premises for a peaceful discussion of the subject matter by the stepmother and the father.

Decision-Making Model

In order to address the specified nursing issue, Uusta’s ethical decision-making model will have to be used, as the participants of the process will have to make a choice together based on what should be best for the child at present. The specified model allows for identifying the relationship between the key stakeholders; as a result, the significance and reliability of their choices and opinions can be located. The given steps are crucial for making sure that the guardians of the child assume an adequate approach towards meeting the needs of the patient and make the choices that will help facilitate the appropriate treatment for the child.

More importantly, the congruency of the actions taken by the stakeholders involved may be evaluated from an objective viewpoint. Particularly, the model in question will reveal that the mother’s choice can be deemed as fairly incoherent in terms of what is beneficial for the child.

However, it is the possibility of encouraging the opponents to actually start a basic discussion that will allow for addressing the conflict and, therefore, resolving it is what makes the specified model especially important in the specified scenario. Seeing that the mother needs to be convinced that providing the corresponding medical treatment is what the child’s life depends on at present is the priority in the given situation, Uusta’s model can be viewed as an appropriate tool for managing the conflict in an impeccable manner.

Designing a Solution

Seeing that the mother will have to be convinced to permit treatment for her daughter, it will be necessary to carry out a discussion of the subject matter with both parents by turns. First and most obvious, the parties will have to voice their concerns. It is important that both parents should describe their feelings and fears regarding the issue instead of switching to attacking the spouse or the viewpoint that they do not agree with. Thus, the environment for a fruitful and coherent discussion can be created.

Afterwards, a conversation involving the parents and the healthcare service representative will have to occur. During this conversation, the parents should bring up the problems that they raised during their personal communication with the healthcare service representative. As a result, constructive dialogue may commence, with the aforementioned healthcare representative being both the mediator between the parties and the proponent of the treatment option. To be more exact, the nurse will have to convince the mother to allow doctors carry out the treatment and prevent meningitis from developing any further.

The communication with the mother will have to be focused on the significance of treatment for Meyssel. Acknowledging the mother’s right to have any religious beliefs is essential to the success of the communication process; at the same time, the nurse will have to steer the conversation to the necessity to strive for the benefit of the child. In other words, the healthcare representative will have to show the mother that, by making a choice between what will be best for her as a member of the church and what will be beneficial for her child, she will have to choose the latter option as a good and responsible parents. Specifically, the nurse will have to emphasize that the mother will have to make a decision by choosing between her own comfort as a believer and the life of her child (Ulrich, 2012).

As far as the communication with the father is concerned, the nurse will have to emphasize the need to be calm and cooperative in the course of the mutual discussion. The father should be aware of the fact that emphasis should lie on the wellbeing of Meysell and that he should not confront his wife but, instead, provide understanding and compassion.

In addition, the nurse will have to perform the role of a negotiator and a peacemaker, as both parents will most likely be rather aggressive towards each other as the conversation evolves. Specifically, the nurse will have to shift the emphasis from personal issues between the stepmother and the father to their concern about their daughter’s health. In addition, the nurse will have to perform the role of an educator by helping the mother reconcile with the idea that her daughter needs an urgent medical treatment now.

As far as the possible outcomes of the specified conversations are concerned, three key results can be attained. In the best-case scenario, the father and the mother will agree to cooperate, and Meyssel will be able to retrieve the help that she needs. Alternatively, the father may fail to refrain from attacking his former wife, therefore, leading to her denial of the nurse’s request. Finally, the mother may refuse to communicate with either her husband or the nurse.

Talking to the Family

The excerpt provided below displays a sample dialogue between the healthcare service representative and the parents.

Nurse (N): “I would like to thank you for agreeing to participate in this discussion. I would like to talk about Meysssell’s situation. The child can be treated successfully. However, you will have to agree that the corresponding medicine should be administered to her. How do you feel about this?”
Father (F): “I feel that this is the only right choice to make.”
Mother (M): “I feel that my child should be treated in a Christian way. I do not approve of what you suggest.”
(N): “The failure to provide treatment to Meyssell will result in her death. Don’t you think that we should act based on what Meysssell needs?”
(F): I appreciate your personal beliefs and know that you are trying to do what’s best. However, we risk Meyssell’s life here. I do not want to lose our daughter.”
{M}: “I think I need to reconsider my choice. Is that a possibility?”
(N): “Certainly.”

Reference List

Corrigan, A., & Gorski, G. (2012). Infusion nursing: An evidence-based approach. St. Louis, Missouri: Elsevier Health Sciences.

Demakis, G. J. (2011). Civil capacities in clinical neuropsychology: Research findings and practical applications. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Ulrich, C. M. (2012). Nursing ethics in everyday practice. Indianapolis, Indiana: Sigma Theta Tau.

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NursingBird. "Meyssell Case Scenario Overview." May 3, 2022.